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Weird Gig This Past Weekend - Youngest Crowd Ever

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by jaywa, Jul 23, 2012.


  1. jaywa

    jaywa

    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    So my covers/originals band headlined a small-town country music festival this past Saturday. Typical set-up: city park, a couple of flatbed trailers as the stage, generator, etc. We did this same event last year as an opening act and got rave reviews so were invited back this year as the main event.

    It was close to 10:00 before we went on and by 11 when we were really hitting our stride, the entire front of the stage was dominated by kids and I don't mean teenagers, I mean like, 8 to 12 year olds. One kid was wearing a black cowboy hat, standing right in front of our singer and singing the words to every song we played. Gets to 11:30, even MORE kids of that age in front of the stage and I'm thinking, "it's way past bedtime... where are all these kids' parents?"

    Before and after the gig wound up signing one kid's arm, another kid's 4-H trophy and some kid's cellphone. There were adults there but they were sitting a ways back from the stage, listening but not really into it.

    It really didn't change our song selection any, but our front man did have to keep his comments a little "cleaner" than usual and cut back on the drinking references. We did have some fun with it though... playing "Red Solo Cup" but changing lyrics to "Red Sippy Cup". Not sure anyone got it but things were surreal enough at that point we really didn't care.

    Keep in mind just the night before we had played a resort bar that was packed wall to wall with 20- and 30-something "beautiful people" who were all down to party. Which is a lot closer to our usual demographic. So it was just kind of a weird contrast.

    Anyone else had a similar experience?
     
  2. One of my cover bands opened for a magician (a bad magician) at a JDRF charity event. Parents mostly ignored us, lol, but 20 or so wee ones - and I mean wee, like between 3 and 7 - shakin' booties on the grass. No complaints from me, was cute! And they were good and ready for that magician!
     
  3. jaywa

    jaywa

    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    This is the third small-town outdoor event we've played this month and at all of them the turnouts have been low and people just haven't seemed to engage like they did at similar events we played last year.

    Frankly I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that this entire month has been blistering hot up here and the majority of the region is in a moderate to severe drought. When you've got as many local folks who depend on agriculture for a living as we do, that's serious business. I really think the weather has sapped a lot of the "party spirit" of folks up in these parts. For the kids, OTOH (and the "beautiful people" hangin at the resorts) that's not such a big deal.

    We've got another small-town street dance on the books for this coming weekend. By then we're supposed to have gotten some rain and it's supposed to cool down some so maybe it will be a better vibe if that happens.
     
  4. 10+yrs ago my wannabe-kindasorta-RHCP/Primus band played an open mic-type thing at a.local.music store. We were in our thirties; the older members of the crowd were mid-teenage. A confused-looking girl told us that since we spelled the bandname- Phat Side Down- w/a *P* she thought we were young. We asked how old she thought we were- she said *twenty* like that's old...
     
  5. Martin89

    Martin89

    Nov 8, 2010
    Glendale, AZ
    Unofficial Endorser: Ibanez, D'Addario, Zoom
    Never had 'em that young but always get plenty of jailbait at the all-ages show, it's like every girl between 15 and 34 look the same...
     
  6. jaywa

    jaywa

    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    And that's why you just gotta keep away from em all... risk-to-reward is just wayyy too high.

    ;)
     
  7. With all the cuts being made to take Arts and Music out of the schools, it should be encouraging to see so many kids getting into live music. Arround my area, live music lives in bars, no one under 21 admitted. So to be able to entertain a group of kids is a treat.
     
  8. jaywa

    jaywa

    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Yeah on that level it was pretty cool. To have kids that age give us two hours of their attention without being plugged into their iPods or constantly texting or whatever... I figure we must have been doing something right, even if it wasn't the audience we had planned on. And we got called back for an encore (by the kids and the adults)... so that felt good.
     
  9. My old band played in a church basement where a prominent member of the audience was a two year old kid who looked like a young Legolas from Lord of the Rings. True story.
     
  10. JaamE

    JaamE Owner of the GK Angry Bird amp

    Apr 13, 2011
    Olympia, WA
    LOL, we played a house party for a young man with Down Syndrome, and several of his friends. Parents mostly ignored us but those DS kids really got into dancing... strange having them dancing 2 feet from you though.
     
  11. paulybass

    paulybass

    Jun 24, 2011
    Toledo
    We used to get that all the time when we played outdoor/ small town festivals. There is not much to do for family outdoor entertainment around here (NW Ohio area) and the parents let their kids run crazy on the dance floor while the parents sit in the back and drink beer. It is cute to see all the little ones go NUTS! Our singer was uncomfortable with all the attention from the 8-10 year old girls :)

    But the hard part is changing lyrics on the fly to a more PG format (think Buckcherry tunes)
     
  12. Swampman Cory

    Swampman Cory

    Nov 9, 2009
    Los Angeles / ex-Michigan
    Endorsing Artist: Reunion Blues, 64 Audio, Mesa Engineering
    I once played with an indie band that got booked for a normal all-ages show... that ended up being a birthday party for an 12-year old. The kids loved it... many of them already knew this guy's songs, but it was weird.
     
  13. jaywa

    jaywa

    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    That's exactly what was happening at our gig last weekend. I've also seen it happen on more than a few wedding dance gigs (at least early in the night).

    Yeah... in song content and crowd banter our band rolls more toward alcohol than sex (our BL/singer really likes beer)... and we run a pretty clean show to start with. So it's not hard for us to adapt when the crowds skew towards families. We just cut the "Rodeo Song" and we're pretty much good to go. :D
     
  14. My old band used to play at this small-town (think 2000 people) youth center. There would usually be a smattering of people from the ages of 5 to 50. I remember one show where an 8-year-old kid kept doing cartwheels in front of where we were playing.
     
  15. MrLenny1

    MrLenny1

    Jan 17, 2009
    N.H.
    Got booked at a Campground once. Saturday night babysitting.
    Kids up front, adults out back.
    Weird gig for us.
     

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